The agony and the ecstasy

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Just a matter of yards separated the Nicolson Institute’s Senior girls football team and their junior team counter-parts at the Highland Football Academy at kick-off time but by the time the bus pulled out of the car park there was a chasm in differing emotions.

Two North of Scotland Cup finals were being played on neighbouring pitches in the Dingwall sunshine with both the juniors and the seniors from the Niccy targeting silverware in the North of Scotland Cup.

But there is a fine line between agony and ecstasy in football as one team tasted glory and the other the bitter taste of defeat. Just 90-seconds denied the juniors the chance to take their match to a deciding penalty shoot-out after a battling 0-0 draw with old foes Mintlaw Academy.

After a string of excellent saves by keeper Anna Macrae she was finally beaten in the dying moments of extra-time by a lucky cross shot which flew across goal and narrowly inside the far post.

Watching from the sidelines were their older schoolmates from the senior side who had made easy work of their own showpiece final - thrashing Fraserburgh 19-0.

Pictured are the North of Scotland Cup winner’s the Nicolson Institute Senior girls with the trophy and the Scottish Shield, which they also won this season.